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Cash cow: Heifer brings more than $90,000 for Gyp Hills wildfire recovery efforts

Manda Bricker
Kansas Agland

 From Kansas Agland:

The lone heifer was the star of Pratt Livestock's Thursday sale, raising more than $90,000 in funds for the Gyp Hills wildfires.

"People have been very generous," said Jake Lewis, the auction market's general manager.

Producer Dave Clawson, of Plains, donated the heifer for the noon bidding.

A crowd of folks from across the state, either present or online, began to bid on the heifer during the progressive auction, lasting about 30 minutes, Lewis said. Bids even came in over the phone.

Bidding started with a $20,000 bid by Pratt Livestock and Winter Auction.

"Then we just kept selling her," he said.

When the progressive auction ended, Plainsville Livestock, Sylvan Grove Livestock and Meyer Fencing of Sylvan Grove purchased the heifer for $3 a pound ? double the market value.

It will all help, said Lewis. The Anderson Creek fire, which started in Woods County, Oklahoma, and stretched into Comanche and Barber counties, burned nearly 400,000 acres, taking with it fences, cattle, outbuildings and homes. Some lost their hay supply.

Manda Bricker, whose family ranches near Sun City, said they were lucky to have just minor repairs to their ranch. However, their leased pastures were burned twice, and they are stilling missing 25 head of cows and their calves are struggling with respiratory issues.

The servant hearts of neighbors, firefighters, churches and folks they don't even know have been amazing, Bricker said. She has seen the power of prayer.

"The outpouring of love in the form of donations has been overwhelming," said Bricker, who attended Thursday's sale. "Love to see neighbors taking care of each other. If these folks were running our country, it would be so different."